The college years should be an exciting time of meeting new people, discovering new opportunities, experiencing what the campus has to offer, and finding out what career path you will eventually take. These years can also bring about both positive and negative experiences regarding dating and intimate relationships. Being aware of the risks involved with intimate sexual activity and knowing about the types of protection available will help you prevent the negative consequences of unhealthy sexual practices. Entering college with a positive attitude and adequate education and resources will help you make healthy and informed decisions about your sexual health and intimate relationships.
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STDs are Sexually Transmitted Diseases while STIs are Sexually Transmitted Infections. STIs are transmitted through sexual activity (vaginal, oral, & anal) and as a result of the infection, these STIs can become STDs overtime. This process is dependent on numerous factors: genetics, immunity, environment, individual make-up, continual exposure, treatment, the possibility of multiple STIs, continual sexual activity without protection.
To view photos of expressed STDs, click here.
Warning: photos are explicit, real, and may be sensitive to some viewers.
STD Quick Facts
STDs are full of sneaky germs and bacteria who like to hide and grow in the most secret and sensitive parts of the human body. Although unwanted and unwelcome, if you come in contact with an STD, your risk of developing it is high. Be Protected! Be Informed! Here are some quick facts:
Abstinence is the best and only 100% way to prevent STDs. It is important to have open communication with your partner about any past or present STDs.
Use protection to prevent against coming in contact with and developing an STD.
Oral contraception does not prevent against any STDs. It is important to couple this contraceptive devise with condoms or another form of protection.
Want to learn how to protect yourself against STDs? Below is a quick fool-proof guide to stay clean and safe when concerning your sexual health!
Are you at risk for developing an STD? Check out the list of risk factors below and evaluate your current sexual health status.
How do I reduce my risk of developing an STD? Below is a list of ways to help lessen your chances.
For a visual of the STD distribution among the United States by age, location, genders, and race, click on the links below, then click on the Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Syphilis tabs to compare the rates.
Each year, the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) announces the STDs status in America. Statistics show that Chlamydia infections are increasing.
A large part of healthy sexual health is protection and prevention of STDs. One of the best ways of doing this is by getting tested. If you, or the person you are with, are sexually active or thinking about becoming sexually active, consider the option of getting tested for STDs. This could help prevent the spread of any unknown and/or unwanted STDs.
Sex is the sum of the structural, functional, and behavioral characteristics of organisms that are involved in reproduction marked by the union of gametes and that distinguish males and females.
Especially in the college environment, we tend to hear a lot of stories and information about STDs. It’s time to be able to differentiate between the facts and rumors!
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Women and men express their feelings in different ways. Effective communication is important for a healthy and loving relationship.
When each partner gets what they want from the relationship, it is then successful. The Four “Simple” Communication Tools by Steve Stewart, author of 52 Simple Rules to Improve Your Relationship was developed to help couples communicate with each other more effectively:
When Verbal and Nonverbal communication match, it is easier to interpret the conversation correctly and helps strengthen the relationship.
It is easy to get the words “Love”, “Sex”, & “Commitment” confused…and that is because they are closely related!
There are many different forms, or types, of love that we can have for an individual. Four of the most common types are explained below:
Love binds us together as partners, parents, children and friends. HEALTHY intimate relationships are an important contributor of the well-being of both individuals & society
Does your relationship need help getting started? Relationship counseling is available through the Counseling Center, 205-348-3863.
The Student Health Center, 205-348-6262, offers many educational resources and services regarding STDs and sexual health to better help you.
The Women and Gender Resource Center, 205-348-5040, maximizes the learning experience of every UA student and the greater UA community through outreach, services, and advocacy to empower women and encourage their active and equal participation. The Women and Gender Resource Center also offers counseling and support groups for women, as well as events targeted towards positive sexual health and wellness.
Have you ever thought back to how your parents met? Or even further, to how your grandparents met? How do these times compare to how you met your partner? Have the “sands of time” changed?
To see a photo montage of how dating has changed over the years, click on the link to view a series of photos outlining the evolution of dating to as far back as 1882!
Just like cars, hairstyles, clothes, and electronics, the trends of dating and relationships continue to change throughout the years. The traditional idea of a man “courting” a woman in order to date her doesn’t typically occur in society today. What kind of era of dating do we live in?